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What is it called when they use the minority to attack the majority?

  1. Feb 3, 2004 #1
    For example:

    - You once lied.
    - You are therefore a liar.

    Perhaps not a very good example, but the premise is the same; they will attack a single manifestation of something as though it were a microcosm of everything else. What is this called? I first thought it was somewhat of a straw man argument, but I'm not certain. It happens a lot in arguments, because someone will take one instance out of many to negate all else. Make sense?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 3, 2004 #2


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    I don't know, but it is not a "stawman". A strawman is a weak argument made to be defeated. You frame your opponent's view in a weak, or even false, way that can easily be negated.

  4. Feb 3, 2004 #3
    That's why I thought it was somewhat of a straw man, because they embellished on a single instance of something (the weak argument) to negate the entire argument. I know it's not, but that's the closest one that came to mind.

    Last edited: Feb 3, 2004
  5. Feb 3, 2004 #4


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  6. Feb 4, 2004 #5
    I would have said choplogic, but I think FZ+ is right.
  7. Feb 6, 2004 #6
    I believe FZ is correct, so I can now at least put a name to it when I hear the familiar argument.

    Thanks all!
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